To kick things off we'll put the Tribe front-and-center. Specifically, the Tribe's search for a closer. The outlook on that got a lot brighter this week when the San Diego Padres more or less told Trevor Hoffman - a guy the Tribe nearly snagged a few years ago - to take a hike.
My colleague James Pete at MVN's Tribe Report makes a pretty good case for the acquisition of Hoffman by the Tribe and some thoughts on why that may be more than just talk.
Meanwhile, although he was officially traded to the Colorado Rockies this afternoon, Huston Street seems like he's still a definite possibility for the Tribe, if they are willing to part with some talent. The Rockies reportedly told Manny Corpas that he is still their closer. The Tribe has also been interested in Rockies 3B Garrett Atkins, so there seems to be at least the possibility of a semi-blockbuster there.
Speaking in the blockbuster realm, SI.com reported recently the White Sox are quiety entertaining offers for their closer Bobby Jenks. Why? God only knows. And who knows if it's true, but that would be some catch. Add in the fact that the Sox are also shopping outfielder Nick Swisher (who can also play 1B), and the imagine runs wild.
That is likely to be a pipe dream though since a.) I'm skeptical the Sox have Jenks on the market, b.) they would be unlikely to trade him to a division rival, and c.) I can't imagine what all the Tribe would have to give up and they are not big on passing along young talent.
Still, it makes for a fun daydream at this time of year.
Two other items of (mild) interest: The Twins' Pat Neshek is set to go under the knife for TJ surgery, putting the reliever out for all of 2009; and the Tigers remain in the market for a SS, figuring that Ramon Santiago is not the man for the job on a full-time basis.
(Photo credit: SD DIRK/flickr)